By on July 24, 2015

2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport now Made in America

UPDATE: Mitsubishi has officially announced they will close the Normal, Ill. plant and are looking for a “strategic buyer.” This article was originally written a couple of hours before the announcement. Our Mitsubishi Doomsday Countdown starts right now, putting Mitsubishi’s Best-Before Date at Tuesday, January 16, 2018.

When Suzuki decided to stop building their last self-produced model in North America, the seven-seater XL7, in the midst of the U.S. economic crisis, it was just another nail in the coffin for that looked to be inevitable — the end of Suzuki sales in North America.

The CAMI plant in Ingersoll, Ontario, Canada — a plant that still cranks out GM products to this day — was an integral part of Suzuki’s success and ultimate demise. Much like the Normal, Illinois Mitsubishi facility, the CAMI plant started as a joint venture between General Motors and its new Japanese BFF.

General Motors, like Chrysler, wanted to leverage product from Japanese automakers. Chrysler went after sports cars while GM affixed the badges of many brands — Chevrolet, GMC, Pontiac, Geo, Passport and Asuna — to the grilles of Sidekicks and Swifts to sell on the lots of its own dealers.

The CAMI plant gave Suzuki a local presence. People bought the Sidekick and its GM-badged brethren in droves — right up until the point they didn’t.

Suzuki, too little and too late, cut its ties with CAMI on May 12, 2009. However, the Normal story is a fair bit different, as it wasn’t Mitsubishi to pull out of the joint venture. In 1991, Chrysler divested part of its share in the joint venture and plant, giving Mitsubishi overall management control. Two years later, Chrysler would sell the remainder of Diamond-Star Motors to Mitsubishi, effectively ending the formal joint-venture partnership. DSM ceased to exist in 1995 when the joint-venture company was renamed Mitsubishi Motor Manufacturing of America.

For Suzuki, it took 907 days after the end of manufacturing before the company packed it in for good in the U.S.

During the economic crisis, I was one of the many who also predicted the end of Mitsubishi in America.

Today, I’m not so sure.

Mitsubishi is making gains in sales, even if those gains are mostly on low-margin products. Also, there is a fair amount of new product on the horizon if the rumor mill is to be believed, and it could prop up the small Japanese automaker long enough to sort out its issues before the next inevitable recession.

Maybe.

Will Mitsubishi meet the same fate as Suzuki? Are we in for a 907-day wait before its ultimate end? We will see. If/when Mitsubishi makes a formal announcement on the future of Normal, we will start the clock.

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89 Comments on “Mitsubishi Doomsday Clock – When Do We Start Counting? UPDATE: Right Now....”


  • avatar
    Speed3

    Rumors are that Mitsubishi as just recently started developing the next-gen Lancer, which is probably at least 2 years out.

    Can Mitsubishi dealers survive and the current product that long? It’s unclear to me they can.

    Honestly I don’t really even care as the Mitsubishi I knew and liked died a long time ago.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      But the next Lancer is to be electric, right? And no more Evo.

    • 0 avatar

      The Mitsubishi dealer nearest me seems to be a buy-here pay-here used-car dealership that sells Mitsubishis on the side.

      It’s also owned by the same company that owns the much larger Chevy dealer next door, so that’s probably why it’s still around. If it’s owned by a big dealer group, it’s probably worth keeping it just for warranty work and parts sales. Plus they might be able to negotiate a payout if they still hold the franchise and Mitsubishi pulls out. GM killing Oldsmobile cost it hundreds of millions in payouts.

      • 0 avatar
        Carl Kolchak

        If what I am reading, you are referring to an Illinois city know primarily for watches. “Watch” the Mitsu dealer become the used car lot for the Chevy and Mazda dealers.
        While in MN, a major dealer chain took what I think was a Mitsu or Suzuki dealer and turn it into a “Value” lot. Actaully had some decent deals, (almost bought an older CTS there). Well they shut that operation down and turned it into a BHPH dealer. As a postscript, the dealer movd down the street to become a combo Suzuki/Mitsubishi dealer at an old Saturn dealer. After this do you burn it down or have an exorcism?

  • avatar
    Steve Biro

    I wish Mitsubishi all the best. Their cars and trucks have been pretty tough and reliable over the years. All they need is fresh product. Meanwhile, Subaru should buy the Normal plant within hours of a formal announcement by Mitsubishi. I’m not saying they will… but they should.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    I was always convinced that Diamond Star Motors USA was some sort of money losing, tax write off scheme of some exotic form, for Mitsubishi Japan (given how large a keiretsu Mitsubishi is).

    Mitsubishi list of winners:

    Eclipse
    Lancer
    Galant
    Colt
    Diamante
    I-MiEV
    Mirage
    Saporro
    Pajero
    Montero
    Magna
    Nimbus
    Lettuce (check it out)
    Madzago
    Mighty Max
    3000GT
    Airtrek
    Outlander
    Pistachio (check it out)

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      You’ve made an egregious omission:

      Mitsubishi Delica!

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      And you forgot the Starion.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      Also: MSZ-GE09NA-8

      Oh wait, that’s the product number for my Mitsubishi HVAC system…

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        I seem to recall a time when they sold Mitsubishi TVs here. Do they not do that any more?

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          I don’t think they do anymore. Maybe they still make projectors?

        • 0 avatar
          geozinger

          No more TVs. I have one of their 46″ big screens. It’s been the best TV I’ve ever owned. A friend of mine had one of their vertical turntables back in the day. Neat stuff.

          WRT their cars, I’ve always admired them for being more adventurous than any other Japanese car maker. Too bad they don’t think more of the US market, but that’s their call.

          I can see where letting go of the tax write-off/PR-exercise USDM factory makes sense, but I doubt they will let go of their established foothold here in the (for now) largest market in the world.

          Hopefully iMievs, Mirages and Outlander Sports can hold the line until we see something from them.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            They had good TVs. They couldn’t compete on price with the Koreans and LED tech won over DLP. Once LED (and Plasma for awhile), got cheaper/bigger, Mitsubishi’s TVs were done for.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Hey, they still do TV’s, just not many, and they’re very high end.

            http://www.amazon.com/Mitsubishi-Diamond-LT-46265-46-Inch-Edge-lit/dp/B003KTN0A0/ref=sr_1_5?s=tv&ie=UTF8&qid=1437768627&sr=1-5&refinements=p_4%3AMitsubishi

          • 0 avatar
            Waftable Torque aka Daniel Ho

            Mitsubishi was the only major manufacturer using scandium oxide phosphors during the late 80’s and 90’s. Phosphors on rival sets would lose their color balance as their CRT’s aged.

            I still fondly remember my 1992 Mitsubishi 45″ rear projector as having a better smoother 480i picture than any flatpanel HDTV can muster today at the same resolution. It’s an illusion, because analog video circuitry can do a better job of handling video noise as gradients than digital engines can.

        • 0 avatar
          tonyola

          They sold Windows PC clones in the 1980s.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        LCD & LED (and OLED) killed Mitsubishi’s tri-colored light mixing projector screen TV store.

    • 0 avatar
      bullnuke

      Dodge Colt Vista and Mitsubishi Expo. I bought one of each new, the Vista in ’86 and the Expo SP in ’92. Great cars, dependable, cheap to own, lotsa room for all my spawn. The Vista was a 5-spd w/4-wheel drive. The Expo had the balance shaft 2.4 w/auto. IMHO the Expo (if jacked up a little and with wheels of the current style in vogue) would sell well in today’s market as it seated 7 and was available with 4-wheel drive. Even the Vista had 7-passenger room (but a fairly gutless engine). I just don’t believe that Mitsubishi was ever seriously committed to the US market and that is too bad.

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    Making US spec cars is becoming an unnecessary burden for car companies whose bread and butter is elsewhere in the world. Now that China is the largest car market in the world I suspect that the desire to make it work in the US is no longer a life or death issue.

    While I am not interested in anything Mitsu makes (the Evo is overpriced) I’d hate to see them leave the market. But I certainly cannot blame them if they decide to do so.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    Mitsubishi rode the coattails of Toyota, Honda and Datsun and was buoyed by its relationship with Chrysler. The ride ended as Americans began to realize that not all Japanese cars were created equal.

    At this point, there is no reason for them to stay in the US. But if they are intent on being here, then it would probably be wise to be the all-crossover niche brand and beat that drum to death. That would be risky, but better than the alternative.

    • 0 avatar
      wolfinator

      Isn’t being a “mostly crossover” make Mazda’s new thing? If you want a slightly-obscure Japanese car, Mazda seems far preferable to me. Better reliability, better dealer network, *some* kind of brand identity.

      In my style-conscience yupster neighborhood, Mazda CUVs are popping up everywhere. What’s a Mitsubishi??

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        Mazda is zoom-zoom.

        Nobody knows what Mitsubishi is. That’s why it needs a brand identity.

        • 0 avatar
          whynot

          Oh every knows what Mitsubishi is: home to those with bad credit. Who knew their disastrous 0-0-0 campaign would have such a lasting effect.

          Problem is that is not exactly the best brand identity to hold.

          • 0 avatar
            CincyDavid

            I was doing face to face debt collection as a second job in the late 90s and through the early 2000s…made a lot of money chasing Mitsubishi Motor Credit slow-pays…some of those folks had no money down, no payment for a year deals, and had already thrashed the poor cars before they paid a dime…it was a recipe for disaster for the brand.

  • avatar
    ciscokidinsf

    Really? DSM partnership only lasted until 1995? I always thought the DSM partnership made it to the early 2000’s

    Yeah the ‘new’ Lancer is at least two years away. The Galant is dead as they couldn’t even convince Nissan to rebadge a car for them. The 2012 Mitsu Galant died basically riding on the same platform and powertrain as the 2007.

    No new Evo’s and the Crappy Mirages can continue coming cheap from Malaysia, but I doubt is enough. At least Suzuki died with Honor in the US, the Kizashi being the best sedan they ever did.

    Mitsubishi Motors (US) is dead. Long Live Mitsubishi !! Hear hear!

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Yeah really – what about the Sebring and stuff. Wasn’t the coupe just an Eclipse, rebodied and made at DSM?

      They do rebadge the Nissan Fuga (aka M35/45/Q70) as the Dignity.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      I think DSM made the Sebring coupe up until 2005. The third gen Eclipse and second gen Sebring Coupe were basically the same crappy thing.

      After Chrysler sold it’s stake in DSM, MMNA still made vehicles, albeit terrible ones, for Chrysler.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        The Sebring was just… awful. One of the worst cars I’ve ever been in. Such fake rouched leather and wood. Terrible quality everything.

        Anyway, so they still built cars for Chrysler, even though the deal had dissolved 10 years prior? Seems like DSM still existed, just not in name.

        Sort of like Saturn lived on through this past year in the Captiva.

  • avatar
    BDT

    I couldn’t care less about Mitsubishi leaving the US market. They have been irrelevant here for a long time, and they’ve made no real effort to change it. The kick in the pants, though, is for the people whose jobs are tied to the marque. Those are good, high paying jobs that will be very difficult for the affected workers to replace.

  • avatar
    sirwired

    This makes total sense… unless the plant is an utterly outdated building packed with uselessness, I see a bidding war between Subaru and Hyundai over the place. Mitsubishi can make more money from the plant by selling it vs. continuing to operate it.

    As far as the fate of Mitsubishi in the US? For a mainstream automaker, the dealer network is pathetically small, as befits it’s rather small product portfolio. Even if the portfolio expanded to a full range of product, that isn’t going to fix the dealer network. I suppose they can try the route of early Kia, by offering penalty-box cars for unbeatable prices, but I don’t think they can get their costs down enough for that to actually be profitable.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      There will be no bidding war for a ex-Chrysler/Mitsubishi UAW factory in Illinois.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      I could be wrong, but I would think that most automakers would prefer to build a facility from the ground up, to its own specs. That may also be cheaper than converting and updating some other company’s plant.

      I would expect Illinois to have to give generously in order to induce someone else to take this thing.

      • 0 avatar
        ClutchCarGo

        As an IL resident, I fully expect our govt to offer up anything short of prima nocta to any mfr interested in setting up shop in the Normal facility. The state senator for Normal has already said there is a plan to find a buyer. Gov Rauner and Speaker Madigan can’t agree on passing a budget, but I’m certain they’ll agree on a couple of decades of tax abatement along with state funded infrastructure improvements to grease the wheels.

        A buyer may not even have to deal with the UAW. I’ve lived in that part of the state, and it’s pretty conservative. No love is lost on unions. I doubt that Rauner could get the Right to Freeload legislation that he wants as part of a deal, but non-agricultural/non-education jobs are scarce down there. The UAW may find real resistance to organizing.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          Believe it or not, building new is usually cheaper than rehab for something like this. That’s especially true if the existing configuration doesn’t work well for the next user.

          • 0 avatar
            ClutchCarGo

            I expect that you’re right, especially in light of the real possibility that Mitsu has done nothing to modernize the facility for years. That won’t prevent IL govt from dangling massive incentives in front of Subaru and Hyundai, because jobs. The only real value that I see in the Diamond Star plant is an existing labor base and the speed with which a new owner may be able to get up and running in the plant.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            What’s going to really suck is that the plant is sure to be a big, ugly brownfield.

            If it isn’t reused for manufacturing of some sort, the cleanup costs will be substantial. Toyota had to essentially pay Tesla to take the NUMMI plant in Fremont because the alternative would have been to pay far more to remediate the site. (TMC got stuck with it due to the Old GM’s failure.)

            In essence, the GM bankruptcy saved Tesla.

            If Mitsu bails out of the US entirely, it will need to either maintain this place on its own dime or else it will just abandon it and stick it on the taxpayers, who will then pay for the clean up.

  • avatar
    SomeGuy

    I remember seeing Mitsubishi at a car show here in Kentucky a long time ago. It was really sad, their little electric car had come out or was on the way to being out, but they still had no real new product. They had a bunch of cars crammed on a 20X20 space while other automakers had so much space they didn’t know what to do with it. Hell, even Infiniti roped off their G37 convertible (LOL)!

  • avatar
    Oberkanone

    Mazda gave up on manufacturing in USA. Sold it’s interest in Flat Rock to Ford.
    Is doomsday clock ticking for Mazda in USA?

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      No. They are in a much better place than Mitsubishi. They have a NAFTA factory and products people want to buy. Mitsubishi has a weird electric car, uncompetitive CUVs, and a 2003 Chevy Aveo.

    • 0 avatar

      The difference is Mazda has North American production in Mexico. Also, their product is constantly being refreshed and redesigned.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      Mazda isn’t exactly in great shape, either, but it’s in a better position than Mitsubishi.

      If Mazda leaves the US in 20 years or so, I won’t be shocked. Mitsubishi won’t need nearly that long.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        They will probably need a partner at some point.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          Mazda could use a larger partner, but it doesn’t have much to offer to most other automakers.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            Toyota (as in Akio Toyoda personally) hearts Mazda. I’m not saying they will turn joint cooperation (and ventures) into complete merger, but there is more than just strong praise of Mazda from no less than Akio Toyoda:

            http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2015/05/16/toyota-in-love-with-Mazda/

            http://www.autonews.com/article/20150517/OEM/305189954/what-drew-mazda-toyota-together?

            “What was more striking was Toyoda’s acknowledgment that Mazda leads his company by a “full lap” in some areas.

            Those include Mazda’s fuel-efficient Skyactiv engines, transmissions and chassis systems, as well as its fetching Kodo design language.

            Toyota engineers say privately that they have been quietly benchmarking Mazda, fascinated by its uncanny ability to churn out high-quality vehicles on a shoestring budget — and to do so profitably from high-cost Japan.

            “Mazda is ahead of us in many areas,” Toyoda said, adding that Toyota engineers should draw inspiration from their Mazda colleagues. “If they can work together, they can create a great chemical reaction. A great product can be produced by that collaboration. And I feel so excited by that.”

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            Just because Toyota wants to date doesn’t mean that it wants to get married.

          • 0 avatar

            You can get a lot of free dinners from dating, though.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            If you can’t make the rent, a free dinner won’t cut it.

            Mazda doesn’t have the money to support an R&D budget that will make it competitive, while its niches aren’t particularly compelling for the US market. (It’s nice to be a winner in Australia, but that’s about as useful as being a decent softball player on your small-town junior college team.) It is going to get harder and harder for Mazda to compete in a global economy against much stronger players.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            And other benefits.

            Seriously though, that’s very effusive praise from Akio; almost to the point of being interpreted as comparatively shaming Toyota’s engineers.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            Toyoda wants to reignite a sports car culture withing TMC.

            (Of course, that resulted in the 86 that Americans who post on car websites love to trash talk as being underpowered, even though it is more powerful than the Corollas that inspired it. But I digress.)

            Reading between the lines, Toyoda must think that his family business has become complacent. Even if he’s wrong about that, it’s good to have a CEO who is a bit nervous.

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            “Toyoda wants to reignite a sports car culture within TMC.”

            ジェスロー ・ ボージュン

      • 0 avatar
        APaGttH

        +1

  • avatar
    djsyndrome

    “Mitsubishi is making gains in sales, even if those gains are mostly on low-volume products. ”

    Volume isn’t the problem, profits per vehicle are. They can sell 100k Mirages a year and still lose money on the venture.

    Between low-margin vehicles and the weight of that 100k warranty, Mitsu is toast. 2018 seems about right.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    So 2/3 of an editorial about the coming demise of Mitsubishi in the United States is about General Motors, and another 1/8 is about Chrysler?

    I get Chrysler – but what Suzuki and GM has to do with this story as the own editorial points out they don’t even really parallel, I don’t get.

    Mitsubishi…GM…death…GM…watch…GM…

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      I didn’t see anything on the $1+ billion in profits GM had last quarter…

      They even did really well in China, which wasn’t expected.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      Mr. Stevenson is linking Suzuki’s and Mitsubishi’s US misfortunes to their respective Detroit partners. He sees parallels between the two situations, and is using that past failure in order to forecast the outcome of this next one.

      I would disagree with that contention, but that’s his argument.

    • 0 avatar

      Suzuki became a manufacturer in North America only because of the JV it had with GM.

      Mitsubishi became a manufacturer in North America only because of the JV it had with Chrysler.

      Both automakers heavily relied on SUVs. Both missed the latest rush to SUVs either because their product isn’t competitive or it’s non-existent.

      Mitsubishi and Suzuki have similar exposure outside of Japan.

      There are many parallels between the two Japanese companies. However, there are a lot of differences, too. I am just using the Suzuki-GM situation as a yardstick for what might come of Mitsubishi.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        I wouldn’t blame their problems on excess capacity or their relationships with other automakers.

        Suzuki became strongly identified with a product that liked to tip over.

        Mitsubishi lost its glow as being Japanese was no longer good enough. American consumers began to realize that Honda and Toyota were top-tier, Nissan was second-tier, and the others were below that.

        This would have happened whether or not they had partnered with the Yanks. The real problem is that they couldn’t keep up with the best, and consumers tend to start favoring the stronger brands as time goes on. Excess capacity was a symptom of uncompetitiveness, not the problem.

        To add to that, the Illinois plant serves many international markets, yet even that isn’t good enough. That tells you how poor demand is for these vehicles.

        • 0 avatar

          I don’t think the Samurai was the problem for Suzuki. After all, it was it’s first product in the US, and they managed to stick around for 25+ years after Consumer Reports and it’s giant outriggers.

          I think it’s more that Suzuki’s niche was making SUV’s at a time when not many other companies were. Once every other company introduced an SUV, there wasn’t much reason to pick a Grand Vitara over a CRV or RAV-4.

  • avatar
    SoCalMikester

    There are 2 niches i can think of that were popular 30 years ago, and could possibly become popular again. A Samurai type vehicle, and a singlecab minitruck. Make em cheap and cheerful.

  • avatar
    udman

    The one thing that dooms the Normal Illinois Plant is the fact that Illinois is not a right-to-work state, and that the UAW will demand that any other auto making plant that buys the plant will be represented by the union. Believe it or not, it is far cheaper in the long run to break ground in the deep south, or Mexico and built a state of the art, modern facility to produce cars and trucks than take over an existing plant that may or may not meet the needs of the new owner.

    There are plenty of constrained sites all over the country (as well as in Canada) that will soon follow the old Mitsubishi Plant while brand new plants in Mexico are built. Unfortunately, that is the way of the new world order.

    • 0 avatar
      bullnuke

      Good point, udman. The water in the wells of Normal, Illinois, have been flavored by the UAW for more than 25 years. Any manufacturer with a management-represented workforce going into that area, even more so that plant, would be asking for problems. It most likely will end up being a brownfield for a while.

    • 0 avatar
      ttacgreg

      Parroting a comment on another site, reading between then lines, the meaning of the term is “right-to-work-for-peanuts”

      • 0 avatar

        That’ll be apparent within the next few decades, as unionized labor outside of public service jobs (police, fire, etc.) die out and companies are finally able to squeeze their non-union workforces for every penny of productivity possible. And if the workers balk? Simply threaten to pull up stakes and truck everything south of the border.

        Most people never know how good they have it until the good times are long past over.

      • 0 avatar
        Dave M.

        And yet when a RTW plant opens, thousands show up to apply, the workforce is loyal with low turnover, and the product is perhaps superior to UAW/CAW product. And no drama. Time and again transplant factories have said “no thanks” to the UAW.

    • 0 avatar

      Maybe VW should buy it. After all, they are probably the only car company who wants their employees to unionize, even though their employees don’t want to.

    • 0 avatar
      geozinger

      The “killer app” for Mexico are all of the FTAs they belong to. Factories in the US are shut out of some of the ones Mexican factories are a part of. This alone puts them ahead of anything in the Southern part of the US or Canada. Add to it the low local wage, generous tax breaks and light environmental enforcement, and you have a modern day manufacturing zone that is hard to beat.

      I can understand why Mazda is rushing to build there, and Kia would be wise to do so also. I’d bet you could build a Japanese car in Mexico and ship it to Japan cheaper than it could be built in Japan. I can’t wait to see the Mexican Lexus…

  • avatar
    mchan1

    Surprised that Mitsubishi Motors is still in the US considering that you don’t really see Mitsubishi or even Suzuki vehicles anywhere.

    Sometimes I may see 1 or 2 but that’s rare!

    The company basically has the following choices:
    1. Bring over the Japanese cars or modify them for US drivers
    2. Create new cars for the American auto market which will be costly
    3. Get out of the American auto market
    – What’s the point of staying in the US?

    Can the company actually compete well with the other top 3 Japanese companies of Honda/Toyota/Nissan in the US?
    Don’t think so if it doesn’t have much of a presence now in the US auto market!

    • 0 avatar
      EAF

      I see many Outlander Sports as well as Evolution X’s here, (Queens NY), I guess we just have better taste than the rest of the country. Ha!

      I would love to own an Evo X but, as mentioned previously, they carry a hefty price tag that I cannot justify.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    The statistics that I found at http://www.statista.com/statistics/271608/global-vehicle-sales-of-automobile-manufacturers/ listed Mitsu 16th of the 18 manufacturers ranked worldwide by sales with 1.08 million sold. 6 of those ranked do not sell vehicles in North America and VW at #2 and Renault-Nissan at #4 are certainly both viable without their North American sales.

    Subaru does not even rank in the top 18.

    So an auto maker can certainly be both competitive and profitable without having a North American sales presence.

    However, I do hope that Mitsu is able to survive in North America. Increased competition is always good for the consumer. I personally would not mind an Outlander and the Gallant is my vote for most inconspicuous vehicle and best bet for a cheap winter ‘beater’.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    This should be interesting to watch. Mgt appears to be working with UAW for a sale too, another interesting development (although this may simply be smoke and mirrors). I’d also be interested to know when the latest labor contract was set to expire and how many of the employees are at or near UAW retirement age as I speculated last year.

    https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/07/review-2014-mitsubishi-mirage-es/#comment-3535402

  • avatar
    wmba

    What, no Chrysler fanbois claiming it was all Mercedes Benz’s fault? This columnist at Car&Driver says so, and its interesting to read how the Germans set themselves up at Normal:

    http://m.caranddriver.com/columns/aaron-robinson-many-are-implicated-in-the-slow-murder-of-mitsubishi-column

    But home in Japan back in 2000, Mitsubishi was in a huge safety cover-up scandal concerning 20 years of not admitting defects to Japan’s equivalent of NHTSA, which quickly eroded their market share. Sales dropped over 50% in Japan, and even then people wondered if the company would close. Twelve executives were arrested. Wheels literally falling off trucks caused the scandal, because like GM, Mitsubishi covered up.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A29583-2004Jul5.html

    Of course, the new management promised everything would change, but they lied, and in 2012 got caught again covering up defects:

    http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSBRE93M09E20130423?irpc=932

    Yes, they are honorable folks, Mitsubishi (/sarc). No wonder the whole thing is circling the drain, and really who needs this bunch of complete losers running a company? Probably why their heiretsu isn’t falling over itself awarding Mitsubishi Motors more credit – they’re not considered trustworthy even at home.

    The usual commenter opinions above are US-centric, as is the wont of Americans. But in the wider world, Mitsubishi is an even worse outfit than you had probably thought, proving that given a chance even the Japanese business world also suffers from bad, possibly criminal management tactics, and public bowing and scraping to be better that signifies nothing much at all, except deception and an unwillingness to change no matter what.

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Who We Are

  • Matthew Guy
  • Timothy Cain
  • Adam Tonge
  • Bozi Tatarevic
  • Chris Tonn
  • Corey Lewis
  • Mark Baruth
  • Ronnie Schreiber